Cut-off (electronics)

Cut-off (electronics)

In electronics, the term Cut-off identifies a state of negligible electrical conduction which is proper of several types of electronic components when a control parameter (which usually is a well-defined voltage or electric current, but could also be an incident light intensity or a magnetic field), is lowered or increased past a value called conduction threshold or simply threshold. The transition from normal conduction to cut-off can be more or less sharp, depending on the type of device considered, and also the speed of this transition varies considerably.


Cutoff values


  • Silicon diode: cutoff occurs when Vf falls below apx 0.6v. The exact voltage varies with temperature.
  • Germanium diode: apx 0.3v, varying with temperature
  • Schottky diode:
  • Diac:
  • Zener diode: reverse cutoff defined by diode voltage rating. Forward cutoff apx 0.6v.
  • Thermionic diode: cutoff voltage depends on device design. Much higher than for silicon devices.
  • Copper oxide diode:
  • Selenium diode:


  • Silicon transistor: apx 0.6v, varying with temperature.
  • Germanium transistor: apx 0.2v, varying with temperature
  • BJT:
  • Triac:


  • Triodes: triodes cut off when applied grid bias is too low. This will be a negative voltage under ordinary conditions.
  • Tetrode, Pentode etc.: There is some degree of interaction between the grids, and values will vary from one device to another. Anode voltage also affects cutoff voltage.

See also

External links

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